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Women Music March #20 — Tina Weymouth

I’ve always enjoyed the music of Talking Heads. Happening across a documentary on bass player, Tina Weymouth, Tom Tom Club came up. Way led onto way and here we are with today’s Woman Music March featured artist. After the lyrics to the song, there is a bonus video: a short documentary on this amazing songwriter/musician.

Martina Michèle Weymouth (born November 22, 1950) is an American musician, singer, songwriter, and author, best known as a founding member and bassist of the new wave group Talking Heads and its side project Tom Tom Club, which she co-founded with husband and Talking Heads drummer, Chris Frantz. In 2002, Weymouth was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Talking Heads.

As a student at the Rhode Island School of Design, she met Chris Frantz and David Byrne who later formed a band and were searching for a bass guitar player. She joined them at Frantz’s request, and began learning and playing bass.

As a bass player she combined the minimalist art-punk bass lines of groups such as Wire and Pere Ubu with danceable, funk-inflected riffs to provide the bedrock of Talking Heads signature sound. Her sound is often very syncopated (e.g., reggae/funk) in feel, combining low fundamental notes with higher flourishes in clipped, staccato rhythms.

Tom Tom Club is an American new wave band founded in 1981 by husband-and-wife team Tina Weymouth and Chris Frantz, both also known for being members of Talking Heads. Their best known songs include “Wordy Rappinghood”, “Genius of Love”, and a cover of The Drifters’ “Under the Boardwalk”, all released on their 1981 debut album Tom Tom Club.

Wordy Rappinghood” was the lead single from Tom Tom Club. It uses part of a traditional Moroccan children’s song and game, “A Ram Sam Sam”, made popular by the 1971 Rolf Harris recording. In the United States, the song topped the Billboard Disco Top 80 chart along with “Genius of Love“.

 

 

What are words worth?
What are words worth? Words

Words in papers, words in books
Words on TV, words for crooks
Words of comfort, words of peace
Words to make the fighting cease
Words to tell you what to do
Words are working hard for you
Eat your words but don’t go hungry
Words have always nearly hung me

Ram sam sam, a ram sam sam
Guli guli guli guli guli ram sam sam
Haykayay yipi yaykayé
Ahou ahou a nikichi

What are words worth?
What are words worth? Words

Words of nuance, words of skill
And words of romance are a thrill
Words are stupid, words are fun
Words can put you on the run

Mots pressé, Mots sensé
Mots qui disent la verité
Mots maudits, mots mentis
Mots qui manquent le fruit d’esprit

Ram sam sam, a ram sam sam
Guli guli guli guli guli ram sam sam
Haykayay yipi yaykayé
Ahou ahou a nikichi

What are words worth?
What are words worth? Words

It’s a rap race, with a fast pace
Concrete words, abstract words
Crazy words and lying words
Hazy words and dying words
Words of faith and tell me straight
Rare words and swear words
Good words and bad words

Ram sam sam, a ram sam sam
Guli guli guli guli guli ram sam sam
Haykayay yipi yaykayé
Ahou ahou a nikichi

What are words worth?
What are words worth? Words

Ram sam sam, a ram sam sam
Guli guli guli guli guli ram sam sam
Haykayay yipi yaykayé
Ahou ahou a nikichi

What are words worth?
What are words worth? Words

Words can make you pay and pay
Four-letter words I cannot say
Panty, toilet, dirty devil
Words are trouble, words are subtle
Words of anger, words of hate
Words over here, words out there
In the air and everywhere
Words of wisdom, words of strife
Words that write the book I like
Words won’t find no right solution
To the planet earth’s pollution
Say the right word, make a million
Words are like a certain person
Who can’t say what they mean
Don’t mean what they say
With a rap rap here and a rap rap there
Here a rap, there a rap
Everywhere a rap rap

Rap it up for the common good
Let us enlist the neighbourhood
It’s okay, I’ve overstood
This is a wordy rappinghood, okay, bye

Ram sam sam, a ram sam sam
Guli guli guli guli guli ram sam sam
Haykayay yipi yaykayé
Ahou ahou a nikichi

What are words worth?
What are words worth? Words

What are words worth?
What are words worth? Words

What are words worth?
What are words worth? Words

He don’t stop, he don’t stop
He don’t stop and he don’t stop
He don’t stop, he don’t stop
He don’t stop and he don’t stop
He don’t stop, he don’t stop
He don’t stop and he don’t stop
He don’t stop, he don’t stop
He don’t stop and he don’t stop
He don’t stop, he don’t stop
He don’t stop and he don’t stop
He don’t stop, he don’t stop
He don’t stop and he don’t stop
He don’t stop, he don’t stop
He don’t stop and he don’t stop
He don’t stop

Songwriters: Tina Weymouth / Christopher Frantz / Laura Elizabeth Weymouth / Lani C. Weymouth / Steven J.c. Stanley

Bonus video:  Short documentary on Tina that is really good!

8 thoughts on “Women Music March #20 — Tina Weymouth

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